Once again I reflexively reached for the bodice from Simplicity 2389 and that BurdaStyle Heidi skirt:
This one is Liberty print—a piece of fabric I have had for a long time. I think this pattern is from 2009, but I’m not sure; it could be earlier.
Ironically, it was purging so many dresses that finally led me to cut into this long-hoarded fabric … even the fabrics that I loved the most (yeah, looking at you, popsicle print) only gave me a kind of “happy to have known you” feeling as I packed them up to ship them to new wearers.
So with this empirical evidence reassuring me that it is unlikely that I will wish I’d saved some special fabric for some theoretically ‘better’ use*, snip snip went the scissors into this Liberty!
I’ve worn this a couple times so far and it has made me very happy. Beep!
(Oh, and speaking of the Dress Purge of 2017 … there are a few dresses left, but August 6 I will be sending whatever hasn’t been purchased off to Goodwill and tallying up the totals.)
(*also it looks like this fabric is still available from third-party sellers in a different colorway)
I just got this Liberty Lantana fabric for a winter dress:
Looking forward to the long process of finding JUST THE RIGHT COLOR PIPING to use with this. (It’s probably going to be another dress like this one; I’m a sucker for a fabrics with a dark ground and bright designs!)
Lantana is the Liberty wool/cotton blend—I think it’s 80% cotton, 20% wool. It’s a dream to sew with and it’s very warm. Perfect winter fabric!
I need this for an event in February, so now this just has to arrive at warp speed from the UK (and my sewing machine has to make a speedy return from the repair shop)!
Do you have any winter dress plans?
I made another dress like this one, right down to also using Liberty Lantana fabric:
The name of this particular print is “Haberdashery”, and I fell in love with the weird faux-patchwork:
(“Haberdashery” is a fairly stupid name to call a Liberty print, because it is nigh-unGoogleable, but here it is at Shaukat iffen you need some. Looks like it comes in a nice bright blue, too.)
And OF COURSE there is piping:
And on the pockets:
Here’s the zipper (bonus piping view):
And the back:
I forgot to take a picture, but the neck facing is the same plaid as in the flower print (or near-enough as makes no nevermind). (Because that’s the sort of thing that makes me weirdly happy.)
This variation has a much longer skirt, nearly tea-length, so that it looks better (in my head) with ankle boots. (Does it actually look better? Who knows.) If you want to see how it looks on, I wore it to give this talk.
I feel like this fabric (at Mood) is a Liberty print, but I can’t find verification of it:
I ordered some (because duh, and because I hadn’t spent my fabric allowance for February OR March) and it doesn’t feel like Tana Lawn, but might feel like the Liberty poplin range — I couldn’t tell for sure. There’s also no marking in the selvedge. It’s also available in blue. This one looks Libertyesque, too.
Why isn’t there a Liberty fabric wiki where you can search for prints by name, year, color, type, key words, etc.? If I didn’t have roughly eleventy-hundred projects going on right now, I’d be making it. Everyone could take photos of their stash with rulers for reference and there’d be badges and wishlists and swap lists and Etsy links and … stop me, please. (Or do it yourself! I’ll be an advisor.)
Speaking of projects, followers of this here blog might be interested to read this in the New York Times today.
Here’s another January-appropriate dress, although I made this back in October, to wear to talk at Pop!Tech. (That there is a video link.)
Specifics: it’s Liberty Lantana, but I don’t remember the pattern name — if you search for Liberty Lantana on eBay this one always comes up. (Lantana is the winter-perfect cotton/wool blend. Super soft, nicely warm, and wrinkle-resistant. Probably my favorite Liberty fabric type.) It’s the Simplicity 2389 bodice with the (heavily modified) Burdastyle Heidi skirt.
For colder weather I’ve been wearing this with a long-sleeved black t-shirt under it. And by “colder weather,” (sorry non-Californians) I mean around low 50s F. Below you can see the colorway — it’s mostly black, with a bunch of blue-y grays and a little warm taupe.
I used the extra-fat piping cord to make this piping. It’s very satisfying.
Here’s the zipper & pocket (also piped) in a washed out photo. (Honestly, #nofilter, my phone is just not that great.)
And the back, with my dress form at a jaunty (not to say off-kilter) angle.
I’ve taken a little break from this pattern but it’s calling to me again. The bodice is probably one of the most comfortable I’ve ever worn, and even those tricky-looking shoulders sew up easily. I’m thinking the next version will probably have a longer skirt (this one is knee length) and we’ll see how that proportion looks. I have some more Lantana …
Not a lot of sewing going on in my atelier lately. Holidays, and a huge press of work*. You know, the usual.
One dress has been hanging on the hook where I keep the in-progress projects for more than a month. Okay, it’s not really a hook, it’s one of those orange spring clamps that photographers use for backdrops, clamped to the worn Ikea Ivar shelf of the bookcases I’ve had since Ivar was invented (fun fact: ‘Ivar’ means “you have too many effing books” in Swedish).
The fabric is some really beautiful army green twilled wool/cotton blend. I mean, totally gorgeous, and sure to be warm and comfy. (It did smell a little like wet sheep when I washed it, though.)
It’s supposed to be another version of this dress. The two others I’ve made from this pattern are really comfortable and great for layering and just the right length for winter so I really want to get this off the hook and onto my back. (When will this happen? ¯_(ツ)_/¯)
Here’s a quick glimpse so you can see what I’m talking about. Of course the facings are Liberty:
That pattern is Liberty “Mike” — it first appeared on this blog as this dress. I also made this dress in the gray colorway but I’m not sure if I ever blogged it. (It also comes in pink and a very 70s green combo that I really want.)
So: first new year’s resolution: finish this darn dress. Then we can get to the other ones, like “create a better system for keeping track of my patterns” and “only purchase one piece of fabric a month”. (I already bought January’s fabric. On January 1.)
What’s on your in-progress hook?
* The work stuff: Wordnik.com is becoming a non-profit, and to support the site we’ve started an “adopt-a-word” program! You can adopt your favorite word here.
I don’t think I’ve posted about this yet — it’s a hybrid Frankendress of Liberty Schlesinger (which I’ve used before and still think looks like a cricket-ball print) with the bodice from Simplicity 2452 and the same skirt (only deeper pleats) as this dress (Simplicity 5238). Okay, that was confusing. Perhaps the pictures will make it easier:
Here’s the (added) side pockets and side zipper:
The deep back pleat in the skirt:
The collar (you can see the mustardy bias tape I used to finish it — probably should have used gray. (It matched more in my head.)
I used the Fashion Incubator method on this collar, and it rolled really nicely at the edge:
Here’s the whole back view:
I made this three different times early this spring but I suppose I never got around to posting them? A search doesn’t turn anything up. I have pictures of the other two as well, so I’ll try to get them up soon.
This dress is all about the piping:
Okay, it’s also about being in one of my all-time favorite Liberty prints, Mark, but mostly it’s about this gathered-shoulder silhouette:
And if you’re going to pipe the shoulder seams, you must pipe the pockets as well (it’s the law):
The shoulder piece makes this really nicely satisfying curved seam at the back neck (ignore my rolling-facing issues):
The shoulder/sleeve has a turnunder for hemmish purposes, which is a feature I always like. Makes things simpler:
Here’s the back view, a bit wrinkly as I wore this for a few hours before taking these pictures:
Last but not least, the full front view:
This pattern is Simplicity 2389 (well, for the bodice, the skirt is that much-adjusted Simplicity 5238). (All rollover text in this post from the Piping Design Handbook.)
There’s still something wonky going on with the side bodice seams, and the fabric is a bit light for the deep front pleat, but I really like this dress. It’s very light and comfortable without feeling skimpy (although the front V is slightly lower than I usually wear). The sleeves are great for full range of motion (have you realized that too-tight armholes are one of my pet peeves, yet?)
There’s another version of this in a heart-print voile, that’s in pieces on my sewing table — hope to have it finished and posted soon.
So this is the same pattern (or lack thereof) as the last dress, only in this Liberty fabric that I adore. Look, they’re little matches! (It’s called “Strike” and Shaukat still has some in the green colorway which is *almost* as adorable.)
Because Tana lawn is so light, I piped the pockets:
The zipper’s not terrible:
Unfortunately, this dress suffers from some of the same problems as the last version. Plus a few more, for variety!
Something is wonky with the back neck:
And oh lord the hem. This is terribly wrong:
This bodice is the one from my old friend Simplicity 1577, minus the collar, plus this new heavily-altered Simplicity 5238 skirt that I am obsessed with. (You can see yet another version here.)
I haven’t yet followed through on all the suggestions from the last post (THANK YOU THEY ARE SO HELPFUL) with the exception of having purchased and read the Betzina Fast Fit book, which I think will be very useful. Especially for that back hem thing, which is even slightly worse on, if you can imagine it.
I managed to take a lot of long-overdue pictures this past Sunday, so you’ll be seeing some new dresses this week!
[Photo of Liberty of London by Stuart Pinfold, on Flickr]
So I’ll be in London the weekend of May 24-25, and wondered: would anyone like to get together to do sewing-ish type things? Like, perhaps, a fabric crawl or a trip to the V&A, or both? I will 100% absolutely be going to Liberty, Shaukat, and to the V&A, and should probably this time make it into more than one shop before closing time on Goldhawk Road …
Is there anything else I should do/see while I’m there? Usually I just wander around and marvel that EVERY SINGLE CORNER is right out of a book. I keep expecting to run into the Bastables, Crêpe Suzette, or Gabriel Syme …